12 Sushi Restaurants With Only 12 Seats—and Under

by Natasha Wolff | August 19, 2013 12:00 am

To the joy of New York’s omakase diners, an 11-year mentee of Tokyo’s Jiro Ono—yes, the Jiro of the beautifully shot documentary Jiro Dreams of Sushi[1]—is the chef behind the bar at Sushi Nakazawa, opening August 19th. Daisuke Nakazawa was senior apprentice to the 85-year-old sushi master, who owns the 10-seat, three-Michelin-starred omakase restaurant in the film. The bar at Sushi Nakazawa, owned by Maurizio de Rosa and Alessandro Borgognone, will also seat a lucky 10 until September, when the restaurant’s full dining room opens. Below, we round up a few more sushi restaurants with very limited capacities.


New York

The restaurant: Sushi Nakazawa[2], 23 Commerce Street, 212-924-2212
Total seats: 10
Chef at the helm: Daisuke Nakazawa of Sukiyabashi Jiro in Tokyo and Shiro’s in Seattle
What to know: Nakazawa will serve omakase tastings paired with sake. Reservations are for parties of two max, and a full dining room at the restaurant opens in September.

The restaurant: Tanoshi[3], 1372 York Avenue, 646-727-9056
Total seats: 10
Chef at the helm: Toshio Oguma of Morimoto in New York and Napa
What to know: The restaurant serves three rounds per day at 6 p.m., 7:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. The chef’s specialty is “loosey sushi,” intended to dissolve upon eating. (Also, eat with your fingers.)

The restaurant: Ichimura at Brushstroke[4], 163 Duane Street, 212-791-3771
Total seats: 12
Chef at the helm: Eiji Ichimura of New York’s Ichimura
What to know: David Bouley redesigned his bar at Brushstroke to showcase chef Ichimura’s expertise to glowing reviews. Omakase menus start at $160.

The restaurant: Sushi Ko[5], 91 Clinton Street, 917-734-5857
Total seats: 11
Chef at the helm: John Daley of Masa and 15 East
What to know: The Lower East Side restaurant serves omakase offerings in three courses ($75), five courses ($125) and seven courses ($175), or full omakase ($200).


Los Angeles

The restaurant: Nowaza Bar[6], 212 North Cañon Drive
Total seats: 10
Chef at the helm: Osamu Fujita of Marssa Restaurant in Las Vegas (also a friend and mentee of sushi master Kazunori Nozawa)
What to know: Reservation-only seatings are $150 per person Monday through Saturday at 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.

The restaurant: Urasawa, 218 N Rodeo Drive, 310-247-8939
Total seats: 10
Chef at the helm: Hiroyuki Urasawa
What to know: In 2011, Urasawa was ranked the number-two most expensive restaurant in the U.S. (after Masa in New York). The average bill is said to be $1,111.


San Francisco

The restaurant: Tekka, 537 Balboa Street, 415-221-8455
Total seats: 11
What to know: Unlike most of its limited-capacity counterparts, this restaurant doesn’t take reservations. Seating times are 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.



The restaurant: Kinchan Sushi[7], 500 Ala Moana Blvd, 808-534-0088
Total seats: 12
What to know: A local hotspot, the Restaurant Row sushi bar offers a 10-course omakase menu.



The restaurant: Sushi Tetsu[8], 12 Jerusalem Passage, +44 20 3217 0090
Total seats: 7
Chef at the helm: Toru Takahashi of Nobu
What to know: The chef’s wife Harumi runs front of house. Eat a la carte or opt for the full omakase.



The restaurant: Sushi Saito[9], 1-9-15 Akasaka, +81 3 3589 4412
Total seats: 7
Chef at the helm: Patron Takashi Saito, one of Japan’s youngest sushi master chefs
What to know: The other three-Michelin-starred sushi restaurant in Tokyo. Chef Saito lets his fish “rest” from one to 20 days, causing the flesh to relax for a more tender, flavorful bite.

The restaurant: Sushi Dai, 5-2-1 Tsukiji, +81 3-3547-6797
Total seats: 12
What to know: For the sushi’for-breakfast types. The wait for a seat here lasts at least two hours.

The restaurant: Sushi Shin, XI 3F 4-3-10 Nishi-Azabu
Total seats: 12
Chef at the helm: Shintaro Suzuki—at 39, he’s another young pro.
What to know: The same way chef Ono’s Sukiyabashi Jiro is modestly located in a Tokyo subway, this restaurant calls the third floor of a nondescript building its home.

  1. Jiro Dreams of Sushi: http://www.magpictures.com/jirodreamsofsushi/
  2. Sushi Nakazawa: http://sushinakazawa.com/
  3. Tanoshi: http://tanoshisushinyc.com/
  4. Ichimura at Brushstroke: http://www.davidbouley.com/brushstroke-main/brushstroke-sushi-%E9%AE%A8/
  5. Sushi Ko: http://newyorksushiko.com/
  6. Nowaza Bar: http://www.nozawabar.com/nozawa_ba/
  7. Kinchan Sushi: http://kinchansushi.com/index.htm
  8. Sushi Tetsu: http://sushitetsu.co.uk/
  9. Sushi Saito: http://sushitetsu.co.uk/

Source URL: https://dujour.com/life/smallest-sushi-restaurants/